Monday, September 25, 2017

Puerto Rico governor: ‘We still need some more help’ from Washington

After facing the devastation of Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico fears that Congress will "shortchange his island once the initial wave of emergency relief is gone." The country is currently facing floods, no electricity, damaged housing and infrastructure,  and a death toll of ten. The governor, Ricardo Rosello, has  also stated that he has been unable to hear from mayors of 6 municipalities. Because of the damage they are facing, the governor has questioned the United States, seeing as many residents are U.S. citizens. Despite the U.S. having responded to the circumstance by sending help through FEMA, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Defense Department such as making shelters, carrying out rescue flights, and operating nine vessels off the coast, the country needs as much help as they can get. They are in need of more supplies and financial help. They state that they thought they would have received more help from the U.S. seeing as they also lent a hand during the Hurricanes that hit our coast. If they do not receive adequate help, many residents may need to migrate to the Unites States. Therefore, more awareness needs to be brought to the difficulties Puerto Rico is currently facing. An example being that President Trump decided to tweet more about the NFL and the controversy they are facing instead of paying more attention and responding to Puerto Rico's current situation. More compassion needs to be shown towards Puerto Rico and we need to help them in any way possible. Seeing this, what are your thoughts on Trump not addressing the situation? How can we help bring more awareness so Puerto Rico gets the help they deserve?


Sunday, September 24, 2017

Immigration Officials Taking New Steps to Discourage Smuggling of Children

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Since some people believe it is not possible for them to achieve “The American dream”, they believe that they can send their kids unattended to the U.S, to have a better life. I understand that many parents want their children to have brighter future. While I have compassion for these children, I feel that when they are illegally smuggled here, it is bad for many reasons. When children are smuggled into the U.S, not only do they face exploitation and other dangers, they are also a burden to taxpayers. When they get across the border, they turn themselves into border control and are handed over to the Department of Health and Human Services, and after that, they are placed in shelters until their family members in the U.S can be located. Some are even put on government assistance.  Therefore, many resources are being used to locate family members and support the kids using taxpayer money. It is also a super scary experience to the kids.  I believe that immigration officials should continue to take steps to discourage and reduce the smuggling of children. What do you think? Is it okay for parents to send their children across the border by themselves?

Will Trumpcare replace Obamacare?

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The Republican party is battling to repeal Obamacare. Obamacare is free health care from the government to help citizens that do not recieve coverage from their employer. Over 20 million Americans currently utilize the free health care. Repealing it would take two years until new Republican health care plan was solidified. The plan would include larger companies requiring to cover health care, fewer people qualifying for affordable health care, and limited federal funding for Medicaid. Do you think the repeal should pass? Do you think the new health care act will be better than Obamacare? How should the government handle the 20 million people without health care while trying to replace it?

Merkel gets a fourth term but German voters deliver far-right surge

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This Saturday German Chancellor Angela Merkel won her fourth term as German Chancellor in a pretty solid victory. However, the ballot tolls were not all that the Christian Democratic Union Party, Merkel's party, had hoped for with the worst showing the party has had since 1949. To a surprise of the party, they lost a considerable amount of votes to the newly founded AfD, an overly right wing political party who are already the third largest party since their founding 4 years ago. Personally I think any political party should be allowed to exist as long as they are a serious and organized political party. But this for me raises questions as to the direction the German people are heading. What do you think? Also, if the AfD are actually able to gain control of Germany in say the next 10 to 20 years, how do you think that this may affect their public image? I am interested to hear because of the events that Germany has taken part in (to loosely state) in the past century.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Trump: NFL owners should fire players who protest the national anthem

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Trump's speech is a part of the larger debate surrounding the boundaries of national respect in sports games, as people have differing opinions on whether kneeling for the national anthem before a game is a sign of disrespect to America and is unpatriotic. This discussion is the newest manifestation of the debate on the patriotism of dissent which has been present for all of American history most notably with the antiwar protests against the Vietnam war and in the fall of the Federalist party who withered away because they were considered unpatriotic owing to their opposition to the war with Great Britain. Personally I think that showing dissent through kneeling at the anthem is perfectly permissible and punishing people who knelt would be the real unpatriotic act. What I want to know is do you think that kneeling during the national anthem should be considered unpatriotic? and what should be done about the people kneeling? would you want to endorse their kneeling if not their cause? punish them? permit it silently? or do something else entirely?

U.S. bombers, fighter jets counter 'reckless behavior' in show of force off North Korea coast

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The United States and North Korea have been having increased conflict between them after a "war of words" this past week. Our President recently addressed the United Nations this past Tuesday and stated how the U.S. will take action against North Korea if we need to protect ourselves or our allies. Kim Jong Un responded with some harsh words calling President Trump "mentally deranged". This show of force displayed with fighter jets against North Korea this weekend was necessary in my opinion because it gives them a message that our country will take no threats. The Pentagon states this was in response to their "reckless behavior". This event is similar to Operation Paul Bunyan, which was a show of force shown against North Korea by the U.S. and South Korea in 1976. Do you agree to this response of "reckless behavior" or do you believe our nation should have handled this situation in a different manner?

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Georgia Tech vigil for student shot by campus police turns violent

21-year-old Scout Schultz was shot and killed by Officials in Georgia Tech, Atlanta on september 16, 2017. Schultz was reported to have made the initial 911 call describing a man walking around possibly intoxicated and armed. When the police came they found him walking around with a knife and wouldn’t comply with the officers. Schultz allegedly came too close to an officer and with one shot aimed to his chest, was killed. After some investigation authorities found 3 suicide notes in his dorm. Students in Georgia Tech had a vigil shortly after the incident. Some were shocked to find out about the event. Many, however, were disappointed that 5 officials couldn’t stop him and had to kill him. The family knew Schultz was battling with depression but saw no signs in the recent months. Students at Georgia Tech were very upset and some became violent to the extent where someone lit a police vehicle on fire. My question for you all is, do you think the mishap of Scout Schultz was unjust? What about the reaction of the upset students? Why or why not?

Monday, September 18, 2017

Despite Rising Seas and Bigger Storms, Florida’s Land Rush Endures

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People love the sun. Indeed, people love the sunny climate of Florida so much that during the Great Florida Land Boom of the 1920s, prospective land developers envisioned draining a massive swamp to create land for new cities and resorts. But now, especially in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, people are becoming well aware that the swamp is biting back. With anticipated sea level rise and climate change due to global warming, Florida is especially vulnerable to flooding and natural disasters. Indeed, 79 tropical storms and hurricanes have hit Florida since 2000. However, this has not deterred land developers, who are ushering in a building boom in coastal areas of Florida. With a population of 21 million people and growing, it will be a difficult task for Florida to accommodate for all these people in the face of more frequent natural disasters. Should new developments be allowed to built unchecked? Or on the other extreme, should Florida begin a lengthy, expensive process of permanently evacuating all the areas vulnerable to sea level rise? In my opinion, the monetary cost of preparing for natural disasters and building and repairing crucial infrastructure will be a small price compared to the lives that might be lost if no new planning takes place. If many people are willing to live in the path of a hurricane if it means extra sun, so be it. How do you think Florida should prepare for the future?

Sunday, September 17, 2017

London terror attack latest: Second man arrested in tube bombing

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Recently, an explosion in London's Tube station categorized as a terrorist threat was recently downgraded from critical to severe as a second suspect was captured and arrested for further questioning. Critical would mean that an attack is imminent while severe means that it is instead highly likely. The original attack was on the morning rush of travel Friday injuring 30 passengers mostly with flash burns. ISIS has claimed their role in the attack as they tend to do with most of the terrorists attacks that have been taking place throughout the world. In recent years, there has been recent uprising in terrorist attacks throughout the west. From bombings and shootings to vehicular rampages, many are hurt by terrorism. Terrorism is nothing new with the origin of the word dating back from the French Revolution in the 18th century. Events such as 9/11 and the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing helped to gain mainstream awareness on terrorism. Some people have looked towards the recent intake of refugees from some of these countries, other's claim it is ISIS's prevalence and influence on younger generations. I think that an increase of security on public transportation is just one of the few things we should do to help to ensure the safety of our nations. What do you think attributes to all these attacks? How can we prevent these attacks in the future?

Rights Groups Accuse Myanmar of 'Ethnic Cleansing' in Rohingya Crackdown

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The Rohingya are a Muslim-minority in the predominately Buddhist Myanmar; therefore, they are often abused, neglected, and treated inhumanely by their state. Rohingya have lived in Myanmar for many centuries, but Myanmar denies them of citizenship and recognizes them as illegal immigrants in their own state. The Burmese military burned 62 villages in the past year in their search for alleged Rohingya militant groups, but in reality this was an effort to drive out the Rohingya people out of Myanmar permanently. There is no point in denying the Rohingya genocide in Myanmar today. It is utterly inconceivable that in this day and age, especially after the horrific genocides of the Armenians and the Jews in Germany, persecuting people for their religion occurs everyday. The United Nations and its various agencies have done a lot in order to help these Rohingya people, but their efforts seems to be not enough. The problem isn't whether or not these people get the protection they need, but it's Myanmar's citizens who think it's acceptable to treat humans with discrimination and hostility. It is too often that we see people of different a race, ethnicity, or religion being discriminated against or persecuted and it needs to end. I think that there is no amount of humanitarian aid or public attention that can cure racism and xenophobia; therefore, it is up to the people to change their mindsets and get rid of their prejudices in order to make the world livable for everybody. We need to advocate for the Rohingya people and condemn Myanmar for their genocidal tendencies. What are your thoughts on the events in Myanmar? Is it possible for Myanmar to change their attitudes towards the Rohingya?

Neil deGrasse Tyson says it might be 'too late' to recover from climate change

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I agree with Neil deGrasse Tyson that TAKING action in ending climate change is needed rather than just continuing a political debate about whether or not it is even real. Even though there is scientific evidence pointing to the fact that climate change made Hurricanes Harvey and Irma more destructive, some people still refuse to consider it as a factor to these storm's strength. Political leaders need to stop fighting about this issue because while they are fighting, nothing is being done.  I feel this is similar to the attitudes of the Holocaust during the 1940s. Many people did not believe that Jews were being killed in concentration camps at the time, and that allowed over 6 million Jews to be executed.
As the water levels rise, all the cities along the coasts will be the first to feel the effects. Being that we live in the Bay Area, does anyone else have any concern with political leaders not moving forward with ending climate change?

Japan split over how to deal with North Korean missile launches

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This past Friday marked the second time North Korea has a fired a missile over Japan in a span of two weeks. These projectiles have been called tests, but many in the international community are deeming these rockets as provocation. Japan is now faced with a tough decision to make, regarding how they should respond to these tests. Some in the Japanese government have suggested scrapping Japan's pacifist constitution in order to re-militarize the nation. Others believe it would be best for the country to acquire nuclear weapons, considering North Korea could be close to making their own. It is important to remember that Japan is the only nation in the world to have suffered the effects of nuclear weapons on a civilian population back in World War II when the United States dropped bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Personally, I think this push for a more defensive nation is understandable. What do you think Japan should do? Should the Japan abide by their pacifist constitution or prepare the nation for a possible attack?